The purpose of this essay is to discuss the right of the government to form laws that affect personal lives of citizens. It also studies the adversary effects that any of such regulations and limitations have on the society. The essay specifically considers the problems of gay marriage, abortion and drinking age since the latter are currently the most controversial public issues.
Privacy is a fundamental right of people and the government is obliged to guarantee it. However, in many instances state laws become the matter of debate about the liberty of the authorities to limit any of human freedoms. One of the most notorious examples is the right to abortion. On the one hand, it is a private business of a woman but on the other one, public opinion creates a spectrum and people believe that it should be legal only in some cases. In the past decade, a set of state laws resulted in the closure of more than a hundred of abortion clinics (Paquette, 2016). It means that now females have a restricted choice of medical institutions and thus limited freedom. The rulings of Roe vs. Wade case became history, and the issue is currently regulated by the Planned Parenthood vs. Casey provisions. According to the latter, the countries received the legal right to restraining abortion practices with the reference that it should not create considerable obstacles for women planning pregnancy termination. The vagueness of this provision gives authorities a chance to implement countless regulations on abortion providers. As a result, in many occurrences small private clinics simply have no possibility to follow these strict requirements and have to shut down. In this way, the government indirectly affects private lives of females who lose the opportunity to get medical help when they need abortion. The supporters of these rulings insist on the necessity to protect womens health. However, it might lead to the situation when ladies decide to resort to illegal abortion rather than deliver babies unwillingly. It shows the explicit violation of the basic human right to personal choice and the threat of growing abortion-related mortality rates.
Another hot topic is the same-sex marriage that has been largely discussed and disputed before the minorities finally got this privilege. The notion of wedlock as the union of exclusively a man and a woman represented unjustifiable discrimination. To make this right universal and unbiased it should mean simply the alliance of two people regardless of any limitations such as gender, race or ethnicity. It is again the matter of personal decision and even though the right to the same-sex marriage got its ratification, the situation with prejudices has not changed much. Despite the fact that gay couples got a chance to get married, such families are restricted in many other ways. Therefore, social preconceptions affect private lives of these people and make them feel undervalued and deprived of basic human rights and privileges. In democratic nations, it should be unthinkable to limit any liberties and discriminate citizens because of their privacy, sexual preferences and personal choices. However, currently most of the countries still practice firing people simply because they are gay (Payton, 2015). It means that the state limits the freedom of its subjects and has the adverse impact on their lives. The minorities find themselves in a controversial situation when they get the right to get married but at the same time, they lose their civil liberties as well as jobs and are often refused basic services.
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Moreover, good intentions and poor realization have relevance to the drinking age restrictions. The USA is just among a few countries with the drinking age of 21, while most of the world adheres to the 18 years limit (Alcohol. Problems and Solutions, n.d.). The state implemented this regulation trying to reduce car accidents related to drink driving and deaths due to alcohol overdoses. However, the constrains have a set of exceptions allowing citizens to consume alcohol at earlier age. It means that those people who do not belong to the exception group feel discriminated and at times pushed to violate the rule so as not to feel deprived or immature.
In conclusion, any restrictions create the desire to break them in all possible ways, especially if they concern privacy and human rights. The government has to be very sensitive while adopting such laws and enforce them only after in-depth public discussions and debates.
- Why abortion clinics in the U.S. are rapidly closing - The Washington Post
- Legal Drinking Ages around the world - You'll be Surprised!
- You can still be fired for being gay in 27 states